Agriculture is a big business in the United States. Any food, fiber, or other product that comes from a plant or animal is at least partly the result of an agriculture program. The farming practices used in the production of these goods have a huge impact on communities, animals, and the environment—and the more people that rely on the industry, the bigger that this impact is going to be. Current farming practices may not be beneficial moving forward, and it’s important to consider the long-term implications.
Striking a balance between providing for the world’s population and making sure the Earth itself is taken care of requires not only an awareness of needed changes, but also the funds to make those changes possible.
This is why individuals and institutions should look at impact investment strategies to invest in stocks, bonds, and other vehicles to support what they believe in. Working with a company like Falcons Rock Impact Investments can help you find the vehicles that work for you. Here is an idea of the kind of impact your investments can have.
What Impact Investing Does for Agriculture Impact investors can help shape the present and future of agriculture, as well as the planet, through the power of their investments. Investing in a company means you’re exercising your shareholder advocacy, even if you aren’t sitting in a board room. Your investment not only shows companies what you as an investor believe in and what the market values, but also provides the resources companies need to support innovation.
With your engagement as a shareholder, you can ensure companies are as invested in you as you are in them, which can help make sustainable agriculture systems and improved environmental practices a reality.
What We’ve Done—and What’s to Come There’s a lot of work to be done to create sustainable agriculture programs. Agriculture not only uses a lot of resources, but also the negative environmental impact is high. Effects that can be mitigated with sustainable practices and investments include land conversion and the resulting habitat loss for native ecosystems, pollution of the land and water due to runoff, and high carbon footprints from energy usage and waste products.
Farming practices should protect the environment, human health, and animal well-being, but also provide the resources our growing population needs for generations to come. Here are some of the measures that sustainable agriculture investments and impact investors support:
Decreasing antibiotic overuse on factory farm animal agriculture, which helps reduce the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria that can harm humansCutting down on the use of confinement cages and gestation crates to improve the welfare of animalsScreening investment vehicles to avoid investments in unsustainable factory farms or producers of genetically modified organisms (GMOs)Reducing pesticide and chemical use to protect bee colonies, which are essential to crop pollinationEliminating destructive, illegal, unregulated, and unreported practices in the seafood industry that lead to overfishing and ecosystem destructionReducing the massive food loss and waste that occurs every year, which contributes to carbon emissions and would enable current programs to feed more peopleResponding to concerns about climate change and animal welfare on factory farms by investing more resources into plant-based proteins, which use less land and lead to fewer greenhouse gas emissions
With shareholder support, sustainable agriculture strategies can lead to concrete changes in business practices and impact the environment at large. Impact investors are the reason why Tyson took a stake in Beyond Meat to branch out into the plant-based protein industry and why Starbucks, Jack in the Box, and Qdoba are instituting policies to end antibiotic use in their poultry supply chains.
Companies want to ensure their shareholders are invested in the good work they’re doing to create healthier and more sustainable practices that benefit everyone.
Companies Have a Lot to Gain, Too It’s not just investors or the surrounding communities that benefit from impactful investing. Companies that take on green initiatives find it provides them with a competitive advantage over other companies in the same industry. Being sustainable and socially aware is a good marketing move that helps companies reach consumers who spend according to their values. When companies avoid or change practices that harm the environment or health of the communities where they live, they develop a good reputation and loyalty from consumers. Avoiding damaging practices is also a good way to avoid lawsuits, which can become expensive and time-consuming.
In addition, sustainable practices are more energy-efficient and ultimately cheaper than many traditional agriculture methods due to waste reduction and strategic resource use. No matter where a company is in the agricultural supply chain, they have a lot to gain from being more mindful of their practices, and impact investors are the key to ensuring they take those steps.
Invest in Sustainable Agriculture with Falcons Rock Impact Investments The practices we use to feed and clothe the world can be greener and more sustainable. Different parts of the agriculture industry can make changes that are good not only for their communities, customers, and the environment, but for their bottom line as well. There are many ways that companies can innovate, no matter how large or small they are or where they are in the supply chain. With Falcons Rock Impact Investments, investors can contribute to green bonds and other investment vehicles that protect our world and the people in it while potentially receiving a healthy financial return.
Everyone can invest in our future, and even small contributions go a long way toward a healthier and more economical tomorrow. Get started by learning more about our investing process.